For individuals interested in becoming addiction counselors, GCU offers a Bachelor of Science in Counseling with an Emphasis in Addiction, Chemical Dependency, and Substance Abuse. Addiction counselors may be interested in working in a variety of supervised settings including private practice, rehabilitation clinics and mental health centers. Some graduates of the addiction counseling degree program will immediately pursue a counseling position whereas others will be prepared to obtain their graduate degree in counseling.
Coursework in the addiction counseling degree provides a foundational knowledge in theoretical approaches to counseling. Students will focus on substance use disorders, addiction and treatment, and ways that adults, children and adolescents struggle with these disorders. The family dynamics of addiction are also examined as well as methods that can be implemented for relapse prevention. Counseling skills courses and a fieldwork/practicum course complete the focused coursework list.
Completion of the addiction counseling degree may qualify graduates to meet the standards for state, national and international certification/licensure for professional prevention specialists and treatment counselors/providers. Participants should contact the appropriate certifying/licensing body to ensure that courses meet certification/licensure requirements.
****Select states may require additional practicum hours to be completed to meet the standards for certification/licensure in that state.
General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University's General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.
|Competency||Requirements||GCU Course Options||Total Credits|
|University Foundations||Upon completion of the Grand Canyon University's University Foundation experience, students will be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of academic skills and self-leadership. They will be able to articulate the range of resources available to assist them, explore career options related to their area of study, and have knowledge of Grand Canyon's community. Students will be able to demonstrate foundational academic success skills, explore GCU resources (CLA, Library, Career Center, ADA office, etc), articulate strategies of self-leadership and management and recognize opportunities to engage in the GCU community. Students with fewer than 24 credits will fulfill the University Foundations requirement with a specified lower-division course. An upper-division selection will be made available to students that enter the university with more than 24 credits.||UNV-103/303, University Success: 4 credits||4 credits|
|Effective Communication||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to construct rhetorically effective communications appropriate to diverse audiences, purposes, and occasions (English composition, communication, critical reading, foreign language, sign language, etc.). Students are required to take 6 credits||ENG-105, English Composition I: 4 credits
UNV-104, 21st Century Skills: Communication and Information Literacy: 4 credits
|Critical Thinking||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to use various analytic and problem-solving skills to examine, evaluate, and/or challenge ideas and arguments. Students are required to take 8 credits of intermediate algebra or higher mathematics.||MAT-134, Applications of Algebra: 4 credits
MAT-260, College Geometry: 4 credits
|Global Awareness, Perspectives, Ethics and Humanities||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate a global perspective and an awareness and appreciation of the scope and variety of literary works as expressions of individual or broader human values. Graduates will demonstrate information literacy which will enable them to locate and analyze information from a variety of sources.||CWV-101, Foundations of a Christian Worldview: 4 credits
PHI-105, 21st Century Skills: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: 4 credits
|Social Sciences||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate awareness and appreciation of and empathy for differences in arts and culture, values, experiences, historical perspectives, and other aspects of life, as well as examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods, social structures, and cultures.||SOC-100, Everyday Sociology: 4 credits
PSY-100, Psychology in Everyday Life: 4 credits
|Course #||Course Title||Course Description||Credits|
|PCN-100||Foundations of Addiction and Substance Use Disorders||This course provides foundational knowledge regarding addiction and substance use disorders. Topics studied include biopsychosocial dynamics; stages, processes, and impact of addiction and substance use; and the role of the addiction professional in prevention, intervention, relapse prevention, and aftercare. In addition, the course provides overviews of the substance abuse counselor's code of ethics, HIPAA, and legal issues involved in counseling.||4|
|PCN-107||Introduction to Counseling Theories||This course provides foundational knowledge in theoretical approaches to counseling. Theoretical models studied include psychodynamic, individual, existential, Gestalt, person-centered, cognitive and behavioral therapy, rational emotive behavioral therapy, family systems, and narrative- and solution-focused therapies.||4|
|PCN-150||Psychopharmacology in Treatment of Addiction and Substance Use Disorders||This course provides a foundational understanding of the biological and psychological components of substance use disorders, addiction and treatment, and application to the client with co-occurring disorders. Students gain foundational knowledge in the principles of pharmacology, anatomy, and physiology as they apply to the major classes of medications. The course also focuses on current drugs used in the treatment of addiction and substance use disorders. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-153||Co-Occurring Disorders and HIV/AIDS||This course provides foundational knowledge regarding the treatment of addiction/substance use disorders and a comorbid psychiatric disorder. Students learn about origins of, methods of transmission for, and myths regarding HIV/AIDS, and treatment issues and prevention strategies for the HIV-positive or AIDS client. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-158||Multicultural Counseling in a Diverse Society||This course focuses on cultural sensitivity and cultural competence as they relate to the development and use of treatment plans designed for clients from diverse populations. Students learn the importance of being knowledgeable of the values and belief systems of diverse populations as well as issues of social justice when examining incidences of drug use among these groups and implementing individual treatment plans. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-162||Grp Interventions & Comm Resources for Addiction & Substance Use Disorders||This course provides foundational knowledge in the study of group dynamics, stages, and processes. Students learn the importance of screening, intervention, and leadership styles in effective group interventions. Self-help groups and community resources are explored. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-255||Case Management and Crisis Intervention Skills for Addiction and Substance||This course provides foundational knowledge on stages of change, interviewing techniques, screening and assessment, report writing, record keeping, treatment planning, and case management. In addition, students will develop knowledge and skill in crisis intervention in preparation for working with clients and families with addiction or substance use disorders. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-265||Relapse Prevention in the Treatment of Addiction and Substance Use Disorder||This course focuses on relapse prevention. Identifying potential triggers for relapse and developing relapse prevention plans are explored. Students are provided with strategies for connecting their clients with community resources. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-275||Family Dynamics &Comm Ed-Treatment of Addiction &Substance Use Disorders||This course focuses on understanding the family dynamics of addiction. In addition, students learn the importance of working with community and prevention programs in addressing addiction and substance use disorders on a broader level. Skill in presenting educational topics pertaining to addiction and substance use disorders are developed. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-360||Dom.Violence,Child,Elder Abuse-Fam w/Addiction &Substance Use Disorders||This course focuses on the legal and ethical responsibilities involved when child abuse, abuse of the elderly, and domestic or family violence has been reported. Understanding the dynamics of working with cases of family violence and domestic partner abuse are explored. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-365||Advanced Counseling Theories-Addiction & Substance Use Disorder Counselors||This course provides advanced study in the application of cognitive and behavioral theory, rational emotive behavioral theory, family systems theory, solution-focused therapy, and EMDR. Newly developed research-based theories are also discussed. In addition, this course provides advanced application of motivational interviewing techniques. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-370||Psychopath & Adv.Treatment-Spec Pop w/Addiction&Substance Use Disorders||This writing-intensive course focuses on assessment, treatment, risk factors, prevention, and aftercare issues as they apply to women, elderly, severely mentally ill, homeless, disabled, and HIV-positive populations. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-373||Spirituality and Addiction||This course focuses on the implications of spirituality in the examination of addiction. Legal, ethical, and spiritual aspects related to death and dying as well as grief and loss are explored. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-404||Prof, Legal,& Ethical Issues-Addiction &Substance Use Disorder Counselors||This writing-intensive course provides an advanced study in the application of ethical guidelines, legal standards, HIPAA, and professional responsibilities in the treatment of addiction and substance use disorders. Topics include attitudes, skills, and behaviors of addiction and substance use disorder counselors; prevention of burnout and compassion fatigue; the importance of obtaining supervision and consultation; and licensure and certification. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-475||Treatment of Addiction & Substance Use Disorders - Children and Adolescents||This course focuses specifically on the special issues involved in treating children and adolescents struggling with addiction or substance use disorders. Students demonstrate and apply understanding of risk factors, social influences, prevention strategies, intervention, treatment planning, and relapse prevention. The importance of family involvement, family education, and legal issues involved in treating children is also discussed. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-481||Process Addictions||This course provides advanced study in the treatment of process addictions, such as compulsive gambling, sexual addiction, work addiction, spending addiction, and eating disorders. Students learn the special issues involved in screening, assessment, prevention, treatment, and relapse prevention related to process addictions. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|PCN-485||Advanced Case Management for Addiction and Substance Use Disorders||This course provides advanced study in case management. Students examine case studies on addiction and substance use disorders to develop knowledge and skill in screening, intake, assessment, treatment planning, record keeping, report writing, referral, and case management. Prerequisite: PCN-255.||4|
|PCN-488||Trauma, Addiction, and Substance Use Disorders||This course provides clinical knowledge of the effects of trauma on clients struggling with addiction and substance use disorders. Students develop knowledge and skill in assessing for anxiety disorders, including trauma, and learn to facilitate a critical incident stress management debriefing. Prerequisites: PCN-100 and PCN-107.||4|
|Required Course Total Credit:||72|
|General Education Requirements:||36|
|Open Elective Credits:||12 credits|
|Total Degree Requirements:||120 credits|
This program is offered in the following formats or locations:
The dynamic capabilities of GCU’s online curriculum offer considerable flexibility and convenience for career oriented professionals who are pursuing their educational goals. Full time faculty members, equipped with strong academic backgrounds and practical experience in their fields, support you every step of the way. Our small class sizes provide an intimate environment that stimulates engaging and challenging discussions. Classes begin frequently.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.